Saturday, October 24, 2009

Triumph at D.O.G. (10/16/09)

Past "Talking Animals" Guest, Uh, Triumphs Again

A momentous occasion in the annals of "Talking Animals"--for starters, it was the first (and, so far, only) instance of a talking animal being a guest--was when we aired an interview with Triumph The Insult Comic Dog on the May 9, 2005 edition of the show.

It was a typically amusing, often hilarious exchange, even as it flirted with one or more FCC violations. Semi-interestingly, at that point, "Talking Animals" was based on the West Coast, Triumph on the East Coast; now, the reverse is true.

We've adored Triumph long before that visit, and, of course, ever since. Including this recent piece he did for "The Tonight Show With Conan O'Brien."

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Whatever The Opposite Of Whoa Nellie Would Be--That's What This Headline Is

Nellie McKay was on "Talking Animals" the other day, marking her fourth visit to the show--the most of any guest.

It makes sense, really. She's the quintessential "Talking Animals" guest, given the show's unusual mix of music, comedy, journalism, animal advocacy and more:

*She's an enormously gifted and acclaimed singer-songwriter-multi-instrumentalist (she released her fourth album, "Normal As Blueberry Pie: A Tribute To Doris Day" one day before this latest chat);

* She's funny. some years ago, she tried her hand at stand-up and her performances--and interviews--are often laced with sharply witty patter);

* Among her initially less obvious talents: At least one type of high-end journalism in the form of her 2007 New York Times Book Review critique of a Doris Day biography

* She's a fervently committed animal welfare advocate--and has been, as we learned in this recent interview, since her pre-adolescence--one of the essential traits she shares with Doris Day. In 2005, McKay was the recipient of the Humane Society's highly prestigious Doris Day Music Award.

The conversation touched on topics ranging from the rescue pitbulls, Hank and Bessie, that share her home--and the "Blueberry Pie" album cover--to re-explaining why, in that Times review of the Doris Day biography, she took the author to task for his repeated use of the phrase "animal lover."

Yet, we didn't come close to covering all the areas I'd hoped to--nor, it seemed, that she'd hoped to.

Stay tuned for another Nellie visit to "Talking Animals"...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Classic Equation: Dog + Ball= Happiness

Daisy is a Labrador Retriever puppy. She loves chasing--retrieving--balls. Enough said.

Monday, October 12, 2009

With Halloween--And Costume Contests--Fast Approaching...

Some of those who live at our house are gearing up for Halloween, and the attendant costume contests. I think the Ironman is pretty good, but whoever that is portraying a Golden Lab puppy is probably going to blow away the competition, no?

Monday, October 5, 2009

A Boy And His Dog

So when we were gearing up to adopt a dog, I knew that I needed to repair or replace a fallen fence in the back of our property before any new canine family member could roam free.

And then, just as we were finalizing plans to bring home our beloved new puppy, Daisy, the folks who bought the house next door--and, it turns out, are nationally-recognized horse people in the realm of dressage, and have been busily converting the place to a full-tilt training facility that would accommodate 8-10 horses--tore out the fence that bordered our home and theirs.

They put in a gleaming white equestrian fence there (and elsewhere, tracing the perimeter of their property). The new fence looks gorgeous, but unlike its predecessor, is not designed to keep animals smaller than horses in, or out.

Which meant that the scope--and cost--of my own fence project had suddenly tripled, maybe quadrupled. As my wife Colleen has reminded each time I've whined, or cursed, about my immense irritation about this matter, the neighbors were perfectly entitled to remove the old fence.

It was on their property, it was theirs to replace.

Which is absolutely accurate, even if that observation fails to note that the other fence was there for decades--at one location, the even had a gate connecting that property with our property, a souvenir of the close friendship enjoyed by the family we bought our home from and the people who recently sold the adjacent house.

Anyway, as of today, our fencing project is complete, and now Daisy can be released from her leash, and run free.

And chase balls--as a dog, especially a Retriever, is meant to do. Daisy is thrilled by this development, as is our son, Mike.

Which has yielded classic photo opps like above: A boy and his dog.